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Coffee help constipation: Myths and Facts About Constipation


Did You Know Coffee Could Actually Help You Relieve Constipation? 5 Other Super Effective Home Remedies

Coffee, water and fibre rich foods can help prevent constipation


  • Regular exercise can help in preventing constipation
  • Include probiotics in your diet to keep constipation at bay
  • Drink lots of water to regularise bowel movement

If a recent study is to be believed, drinking coffee can actually help in improving bowel movement. This may be because coffee helps in changing gut bacteria and improving ability of intestines to contract. The study, conducted on rats, found that coffee improved contracting ability of muscles in small intestines. These effects of coffee were interestingly were found to be independent of caffeine, as caffeine-free coffee also showed same results as coffee with caffeine did. The study was released Digestive Disease Week (DDW) 2019 (in San Diego) by University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston.

Drinking coffee has previously been popular for improving bowel movement, but the specific reason or the mechanism behind it was not found. Results of this study indicate there is a need for additional clinical research for determining effects of coffee for improving bowel movement, and if it can be an effective treatment for constipation.

Also read: 6 Cups Of Coffee Daily May Help Fight Fatty Liver Disease

Now isn’t this simply gives another reason to love coffee, all the more?

Apart from drinking coffee, there are other ways to improve your bowel movement and prevent constipation. Read below to know everything about them:

1. Drink more water: Drinking more water is one of the most effective ways to prevent constipation and regularise bowel movement. Dehydration can make you constipated. Make sure you drink 8 to 10 glasses of water every day.

2. Include more fibre in your diet: Fibre-rich foods not only help in aiding weight loss, but also are super effective for keeping constipation at bay. Foods rich in fibre (raw fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds, beans and lentils to name a few) help in forming bulk of stools and improves consistency of bowel movements, thus making them easier to pass. However, do not go overboard with consumption of fibre as it can adversely impact your health. Consume a balanced diet and make sure it includes fibrous foods.

Include more fibre rich foods in your diet to prevent constipation
Photo Credit: iStock

Also read: Drinking Coffee May Do More Good Than Harm: Study

3. Exercise regularly: Regular exercise is the single most effective way to stay healthy, prevent constipation and regularise bowel habits.

4. Include probiotics in your diet: Chronic constipation can be dealt with effectively by including probiotics in your diet. Imbalance of gut bacteria is commonly found in people with constipation. Yogurt, kimchi, kefir and kombucha are examples of healthy probiotics that must be a part of your daily diet.

5. Prebiotics: Prebiotic fibres improve digestion by providing the gut with several gut-friendly bacteria. Onions, garlic and banana are examples of foods that are rich in prebiotic fibre. Eat these foods daily to prevent constipation and ensure regular bowel movement.

Also read: Here’s Why You Like Coffee More Than Tea: Benefits Decoded

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.

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Why Does Coffee Make You Poop? How Coffee and Caffeine Aid Indigestion

Ask the Poop Doctor is a new column from Dr. Sameer Islam, MD, a Texas-based gastroenterologist who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. He also hosts segments such as Poop Tip Thursday and Let’s Talk About Poop on his YouTube channel. Check out his segment devoted completely to this issue about coffee and your gut here. Have a question you’d like to submit? Leave it in the comments section below!

Why exactly does coffee make you poop?

Amazingly enough, we actually don’t know why coffee makes you poop. We know that coffee initiates what’s known as the “gastrocolic reflex”—that’s when your stomach “wakes up” from the coffee and starts to contract. This continues all the way down from the stomach to the small intestine to the colon, where you will eventually have your bowel movement. The effect is the same in men and women.

There’s some thought that the acidity of coffee is what also helps to stimulate your bowels. Coffee, both decaf and caffeinated, contain chlorogenic acid, which triggers higher stomach acid levels and higher production of gastric acid. The overall acidity bump makes the stomach move its contents out more quickly than usual. But, once again, it’s not clear which of the hundreds of chemicals found in a cup of Joe are responsible for that boost. Lastly, we know there is a role in the actual beans and oils in coffee that helps you poop.

Will decaf coffee achieve the same effect?

Yes, both decaf and caffeinated coffee will make you poop, but the caffeine in coffee will help you poop more. So, if you’re really hoping to get a movement, go for the caffeinated cuppa Joe.

Does it matter if you add milk or cream to your coffee?

Yes, all that milk and cream can negate some of the positive effects we see in coffee. Not to mention the excess calories and sugar that comes with adding that stuff.

What about other drinks that contain high amounts of caffeine, such as energy drinks?

Nope, there’s something in the coffee beans themselves and the oils that allows you to have a bowel movement with them. Other caffeinated drinks typically don’t have the same effect as coffee does.

Have there been any noteworthy studies that help explain this connection?

The closest thing that we have is a study in 2018 regarding patients getting coffee after surgery. Commonly after surgery, the bowels don’t want to “wake up” (referred to as an ileus). This can lead to pain, nausea, and constipation. The results of this study showed that consuming coffee did improve bowel movement after surgery.

What’s the connection between coffee, hormones, and gut health?

There is active research going on right now about how coffee can improve your overall gut health. Coffee has been shown to improve your liver health, decrease the risk of colon cancer, improve cognitive function, decrease the risk of cardiovascular death (CHF, heart attack, stroke), type II diabetes, Parkinson’s, etc. More and more studies are coming out, so stay tuned.

How do conditions like IBS and lactose intolerance factor in?

Patients who have IBS may not respond to drinking coffee, especially if they have IBS constipation-predominant. On the other end of the spectrum, if you’re suffering from diarrhea, GERD, heartburn, or have lactose issues, sometimes drinking coffee will worsen those conditions. Everyone is different when it comes to their response.

If you’re

trying to use coffee to make yourself poop, such as before a race, when should you drink it?

It can be as quick as 10 minutes, but for most people, the peak concentration in the blood occurs after 45 minutes. So, if you plan a long trip or a race, make sure you prepare for the need to poo soon after drinking it.

How much coffee do you need to achieve the, um, desired effect?

Every person is different in terms of how they respond to coffee’s effects. There are many factors involved: your tolerance to caffeine, whether you have other conditions (irritable bowel syndrome, heartburn), what kind of coffee you drink, and so on.

However, up to 400 milligrams (mg) of caffeine a day appears to be safe for most healthy adults. That’s roughly the amount of caffeine in four cups of brewed coffee, 10 cans of cola, or two “energy shot” drinks. Keep in mind that the actual caffeine content in beverages varies widely, especially among energy drinks.

Doctor Sameer Islam
Doctor Sameer Islam is a functional gastroenterologist based in Lubbock, Texas who specializes in taking a holistic approach to treating all digestive conditions.

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Here’s Why You Need to Poop After Your Morning Cup of Coffee

For many of us, nothing quite gets us going in the morning like a cup of coffee. And when I say gets us going, I mean both mentally and physically, because it’s no secret that for a lot of the population, coffee has an incredibly rapid laxative effect. So how exactly does a cup of coffee make you need to poop? In the latest episode of Reactions, a video series produced by the American Chemical Society, all is explained. And you’ll never enjoy your morning espresso in quite the same way again.


But first off, we should explain that the coffee/poop question has both a long and a short answer. As the American Chemical Society explains in the video above, although scientists have long known that many people experience a laxative effect from coffee, and now understand the mechanism that triggers this, what’s less clear is why this happens.

Initially, researchers thought caffeine was to blame for all the bowel movements. But then they discovered that decaffeinated coffee has the same effect, while energy drinks and caffeinated soft drinks don’t, so they figured there had to be something else going on.

They now believe that one of these triggers could be the acidic nature of coffee, which causes our stomachs to secrete more gastric acid than usual. This boost in acidity can cause our stomachs to dump their contents more quickly into our intestines, which could help explain why coffee seems to speed the digestive process up so much.

But coffee also has an impact on our large intestine itself. The drink has been shown to increase levels of two hormones in our bloodstream called gastrin and cholecystokinin, which help us clear waste from our bodies. Gastrin is in charge of peristalsis, which is the wave-like relaxation and contraction of muscles that pushes waste out, and cholecystokinin triggers the release of digestive enzymes and bile that regulate the pooping process.

But this is where scientists get a little fuzzy, because even though they understand this mechanism, they’re still not sure which of the nearly 1,000 compounds inside coffee is causing this effect.

Watch the video above to find out more about why coffee sends you running to the bathroom. And you know what’s really cool? If you’re reading this because you want to know why coffee goes right through you, then you’re in an elite group, because the beverage only has a laxative effect on around 3 out of 10 people according to the American Chemical Society. Aw guys… we’re special!

20 home remedies for constipation relief

Defecation is a vital function to keep the body healthy. Typically, an individual will need to pass three or more bowel movements per week. Some individuals poop two to three times a day. Constipation occurs when fecal matter hardens in the colon, and it becomes difficult to have a bowel movement. Healthy stool consistency should be soft to firm as well as long and tubular in form. 

Dehydration, stress, lack of exercise, and fiber deficiency are some causes of constipation. Over-eating and consuming junk food can also contribute to infrequent bowel movements. It’s also a common side effect of many prescription medications. 

Constipation can affect all age groups, but especially the elderly. One-third of adults older than 60 experience constipation. Others who are more susceptible to constipation or chronic constipation include women, especially those who are pregnant or recently given birth, and non-Caucasians.  

Constipation can be very uncomfortable, but thankfully, numerous home remedies for constipation to try.

20 home remedies for constipation relief

Dietary changes, drinking water, exercise, and taking supplements are among the natural ways to relieve symptoms of constipation. Identifying the factors contributing to constipation can help you decide which remedies are best. A combination of the following remedies may be necessary to treat the problem.

  1. Water
  2. Exercise
  3. Abdominal massage
  4. Fiber
  5. Probiotics
  6. Castor oil
  7. Coffee
  8. Senna
  9. Tea
  10. Lemon juice
  11. Aloe vera
  12. Coconut water
  13. Vitamins
  14. Milk and ghee
  15. Fennel
  16. Prunes, figs, raisins
  17. Honey
  18. Molasses
  19. Omega-3 oil
  20. Baking soda

1. Water

Drinking enough water can be the first step to constipation relief. When an individual becomes dehydrated, the body starts pulling water from all over the body, including the colon. Staying hydrated by drinking six to eight glasses of water a day can keep stool soft, making bowel movements more frequent and comfortable.

2. Exercise

Regular exercise can help maintain healthy bowel movements. Both vigorous and passive activity can have a positive effect on the bowels. Running can jostle the intestines and colon in a manner that encourages the stool to move. Participating in sports activities, dancing, or even walking for 10 to 15 minutes once or twice a day can help keep you regular. 

Constipation can be uncomfortable, especially if you are bloated or cramping, making exercise difficult at times. A more relaxing approach to natural bowel relief can be through stretching and practicing yoga. Yoga, especially involving twisting motion of the torso, can also squeeze the intestines so that the stool loosens in the colon. Seated twist and supine twist are two yoga positions that incorporate twisting the torso. Numerous other poses, such as downward-facing dog and standing forward bend, are also recommended for stimulating bowel movement.  

3. Abdominal massage

Massaging the abdomen can be a beneficial home remedy for constipation. Lying on your back, press the abdomen in a clockwise motion for approximately 10 minutes. You can do this massage twice a day. The clockwise motion helps push stool in the colon toward the rectum. Drinking hot water or tea before the massage can further improve the gastrointestinal system.

4. Fiber

Eating enough fiber can contribute to a healthy digestive system as well as weight loss. The daily recommendation for dietary fiber consumption is 25 to 30 grams of fiber. Fiber can be soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber gives stool density, while insoluble fiber can contribute to the pace in which it moves through the colon. 

Fiber-rich foods often contain both soluble and insoluble fiber. Foods such as oatmeal, flaxseed, whole grains, fruit, beans, bran, and vegetables provide a fiber source that can prevent hard stool. Dietary choices have a strong impact on constipation.  

OTC fiber supplements can help increase fiber intake without having to eat excessive amounts of fiber-rich foods. Fiber supplements come in capsule form or powder that can be added to water, take as directed. 

Compare fiber supplements
Metamucil (psyllium fiber) Oral 2 g of fiber per 5 capsules; 3 g of fiber per tbsp of powder Difficulty breathing, itchy skin, trouble swallowing, facial swelling, bloating
Citrucel(methylcellulose) Oral 1 g of fiber per 2 capsules; 2 g of fiber per tbsp of powder Indigestion, nausea, tiredness, stained teeth
Benefiber (wheat dextrin) Oral 3 g of fiber per 2 tbsp of powder Diarrhea, bloating, cramping

Add powder fiber supplements to water or juice but not carbonated beverages like soda. Allow your body time to adjust to the fiber supplement. Drinking extra water can help reduce side effects, such as bloating.   

RELATED: Metamucil details | Citrucel details | Psyllium fiber details | Methylcellulose details

5. Probiotics

Digestion supported with probiotics can reduce constipation. Probiotics help restore healthy bacteria in the digestive system. Found naturally in foods such as sauerkraut and yogurt or taken as a supplement, probiotics can be added to your daily regimen to prevent or relieve constipation. 

6. Castor oil

A natural laxative, castor oil derived from the castor bean can be taken orally to stimulate a bowel movement. Not only does this ancient oil lubricate the intestines, but it also causes the intestines to contract. Take castor oil as directed, one to two teaspoons on an empty stomach. Allow up to eight hours before a bowel movement occurs.

7. Coffee

Drinking caffeinated coffee can stimulate a bowel movement. Caffeine can cause the muscles in the intestines to contract. This stimulation can move the stool toward the rectum. Though caffeinated coffee can help move bowels, it can also be dehydrating. Be sure to drink plenty of water when drinking caffeinated beverages, as not to worsen the condition. 

8. Senna

Senna is an herb that utilizes the leaf, flower, and fruit of the cassia plant. It’s been used for thousands of years as a natural laxative. Senna is a stimulant laxative that helps the digestive tract to contract. Often drunk as a tea, senna can be very effective and work within several hours after consumption. Approved by the FDA, Senna is available as a tablet or powder supplement. It can also help with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and hemorrhoids.

9. Tea

Warm liquids can be soothing to the digestive and gastrointestinal systems. Certains teas such as ginger and peppermint help upset stomachs. Below is a list of teas that could prove to be helpful if you are experiencing constipation:

  • Ginger: This warming spice generates heat and speeds up digestion.
  • Peppermint: The menthol can soothe an upset stomach and move stool through intestines.
  • Chamomile: Relaxes the digestive muscles, which can prevent the bowels from moving on their own during stress and tension.
  • Licorice root: Its anti-inflammatory properties can ease the digestive system after a meal.
  • Dandelion root: Alleviates mild constipation by stimulating the liver.
  • Black or green tea: Caffeinated tea works similarly to coffee in stimulating the bowels.

10. Lemon juice

Lemon juice can help flush toxins from the body. As a natural digestive aid, lemon juice can be added to drinking water or tea to enhance bowel stimulation. Freshly squeezed lemon juice is best.

11. Aloe vera

Often used externally to soothe cuts and burns, you can also take aloe vera orally to soothe the digestive tract. Drink aloe vera juice plain or add it to smoothies or other beverages to help alleviate constipation and IBS.  

12. Coconut water

Drinking coconut water can be detoxifying and hydrating. It increases kidney function increases and stimulates the digestive system. Magnesium is also naturally found in coconut water, which helps the muscles in the intestinal wall move fecal matter out of the body. 

13. Vitamins

Vitamins can be helpful to keep your digestive system balanced. Below is a list of recommended vitamins for gastrointestinal health.

Eating foods that contain these vitamins could increase your number of bowel movements. Vitamins in supplement form are another way to ensure you are getting the proper amount of your daily recommendation.

14. Milk and ghee

While consuming too much dairy or dairy products can sometimes lead to constipation, some people can benefit from warm milk to stimulate the bowels, especially when ghee is added. Ghee is clarified butter and an ancient healing tool. Ayurvedic practices have used ghee for its healing properties for thousands of years. You can try adding one to two teaspoons of ghee to warm milk in the evening to gently and naturally encourage a bowel movement the next morning.

15. Fennel

Fennel is a mild, natural laxative. Roasted fennel can be added to warm water and drank in the evening. Fennel seeds increase gastric enzymes in the digestive system, helping stool move through the colon effectively.

16. Prunes, figs, and raisins

“Eating prunes have been the standard home remedy for constipation,” says Leann Poston, MD, the assistant dean at Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine and a contributor for Ikon Health. “Besides their fiber content, they contain sorbitol, which seems to have a laxative effect.” 

Dried plums or prunes have always been on the list for keeping bowel movements regular. Eating prunes or drinking prune juice is not just for senior citizens. A six-ounce glass of prune juice every morning could be the remedy to end constipation. If you don’t like prunes, eating raisins or figs will provide a similar function. Dried fruit has more fiber than drinking prune juice, but both have a natural laxative quality.

17. Honey

Chock full of enzymes that aid in digestive health, honey is a common household item that is also a mild laxative. When taken plain or added to tea, water, or warm milk, honey can ease constipation. 

18. Molasses

Molasses, especially blackstrap molasses, can help soften stool. Blackstrap molasses is molasses that has been boiled down to a concentrated form and contains vital vitamins and minerals like magnesium that can provide constipation relief. One tablespoon in the evening plain or added to warm water can gently encourage a bowel movement in the morning.  

19. Omega-3 oil

Omega-3 oils in fish oil, hemp seed oil, and flaxseed oil lubricate the intestinal walls for a laxative effect. Incorporating fish such as salmon, flaxseed, avocados, and hemp products into your diet can naturally introduce these oils to your digestive system. Omega-3 supplements are also available if you don’t like or can’t eat these foods on a regular basis.

20. Baking soda

Baking soda, another household staple, can be used to clean out the colon. Make a solution of one teaspoon of baking soda to approximately one-fourth cup of warm water. The baking soda reacts with stomach acids to stimulate a bowel movement.

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Constipation medications

In addition to home remedies for constipation, over-the-counter (OTC) products can also be beneficial in stimulating a bowel movement. Oral laxatives, enemas, and suppositories can be purchased without a prescription to relieve constipation. Laxatives and stool softeners come in a variety of forms and are effective within hours. 

Compare laxatives
Senokot (senna) Stimulant laxative Oral Capsule, tablet, powder, liquid Muscle aches, tiredness, confusion, rash
Dulcolax (Docusate sodium) Surfactant laxative Oral Capsule, liquid, suppository Skin rash, nausea
Miralax (polyethylene glycol) Osmotic laxative Oral Powder Bloating, diarrhea, facial swelling


If constipation needs to be more immediately relieved, an enema may be more useful than a laxative. Enemas are often composed of a saline solution that is inserted into the rectum. The liquid from the enema flushes stool from the bowels. Although enemas are safe and easy to use, there are warnings about over-using this method. 


Another treatment for constipation includes laxative suppositories, which are inserted into the rectum. A glycerine tablet suppository can relieve mild to moderate constipation. Once inserted, the suppository begins to melt. The tablet may not completely dissolve but should be kept in for 15 to 30 minutes for effectiveness. Suppositories can be a gentle and fast-acting tool to relieve constipation.

RELATED: Senokot details | Dulcolax details | Miralax details| Senna details | Docusate sodium details | Polyethylene glycol details 

When to see a doctor for constipation

Most individuals have experienced some form of constipation in their lifetime. While constipation can go away on its own, it is helpful to know what can ease the discomfort of this common ailment. If home remedies for constipation or OTC products do not produce a bowel movement, an individual may need to seek medical attention. Untreated constipation can lead to an impacted bowel. 

Constipation may be a symptom of a greater health concern, consult your doctor or healthcare professional if you have not had a bowel movement within a two- to three-week period of time. Furthermore, medical assistance may be needed if you are experiencing severe abdominal pain or concerning blood in the constipated stool. Ask your doctor about recommended home remedies for constipation and prevention of constipation in the future. 

7 Foods That Might Make You Go

Using the bathroom after eating or drinking is a normal part of the body’s digestion process. But for some people, certain foods trigger an urgent need to go to the restroom — maybe with diarrhea — shortly after eating.

If you notice you’re sprinting to the bathroom or having diarrhea regularly, one of these seven foods may be the culprit:

1. Coffee:

Your beloved cup of coffee may be a reason you’re running to the bathroom.

Many people have a bowel movement after drinking this morning staple. “The caffeine in coffee is a stimulant,” explains Dr. David Talabiska, gastroenterologist at Geisinger. “It can help you feel more alert, but it also stimulates your digestive system. This makes it work faster and less efficiently, potentially causing loose stool or diarrhea.”

Some people may even get the same effect from drinking decaf coffee, too.

“It’s likely that chemicals in coffee, like gastrin and cholecystokinin, also contribute to the after-coffee bathroom trip, but the effects of these chemicals aren’t completely understood,” adds Dr. Talabiska.

2. Sugar substitutes:

Seeing “diet” or “sugar-free’” on a label may be a red flag if you get diarrhea from eating certain foods. “Some of the natural and artificial sweeteners in diet drinks and foods, such as aspartame, sucralose, maltitol and sorbitol, may not digest properly for some people,” explains Dr. Talabiska.

Sugar substitutes can cause laxative effects, especially when paired with other triggering foods. For example, adding a sugar-free sweetener to your coffee might result in an urgent bathroom visit.

3. Fast food:

Fast food, like french fries, burgers or fried chicken, can cause (or worsen) diarrhea.

“Fast foods and greasy foods are hard on the stomach, especially if you aren’t used to eating them,” says Dr. Talabiska. “The fats found in fried and fast foods are difficult for the body to digest. These fats make their way into the intestines, causing irritation and diarrhea.”

4. Spicy food:

If you eat spicy foods often, you may have no issues with them. But if you’re someone whose mouth burns at the mere sight of a chili pepper, you may have a problem.

Chili peppers and other spicy foods can irritate your digestive tract, especially if you’re not used to them.

The chemicals that make food spicy, like capsaicin in peppers, are hard to digest, so they aren’t broken down in digestion. “As they pass through the digestive system, they can irritate the linings of the stomach and intestines,” explains Dr. Talabiska. “To avoid irritation, the stomach and intestines contract to push the foods through quicker, which can result in loose stools.”

5. Alcohol:

Drinking a few glasses of wine or having a beer or two is not only a source of added calories, but it can also irritate your stomach and speed up digestion.

And alcohol is a depressant — it slows down your nervous system, resulting in less control over digestion. This is why hangovers are often accompanied by watery stools.

6. Dairy:

Some research has linked dairy products to inflammation in the body. The sugars, saturated fats, lactose and proteins in dairy are difficult to digest, and as the body copes with them, it causes inflammation.

However, people who are lactose intolerant are even more sensitive to dairy. Many people have difficulty digesting lactose, and it’s especially common in people of East Asian, Arabic, Jewish, West African, Greek and Italian descent.

People who are lactose intolerant may have nausea, cramps, gas and diarrhea after consuming things like milk, cheese or yogurt. “If you regularly experience diarrhea after eating dairy, you should talk to your doctor,” suggests Dr. Talabiska.

7. High-fiber fruits and veggies:

While high in nutrients and vitamins — and a large part of a healthy diet — some fruits and vegetables can cause you to “go” more often because they’re high in fiber. “This can be especially true if you aren’t used to eating large amounts of fiber,” adds Dr. Talabiska.

Fruits like prunes, figs, dates, raisins and others contain fiber and sorbitol, which cause laxative effects. Vegetables such as garlic and onions are high in fiber and contain chemicals that can irritate the digestive tract and cause loose stools.

Though fruits and vegetables are important parts of a balanced diet, if you find that certain produce causes diarrhea, try eating smaller portions or substituting other kinds.

(h4) Next steps:

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Can having tea or coffee first thing in the morning help ease constipation?

Read this before you reach out for your morning cuppa.

Written by Debjani Arora | Updated : November 16, 2017 10:52 AM IST

Constipation can be a dampener when it starts to bother you at the start of your day. It is necessary that you clean your bowels first thing in the morning to kick start all fresh. People resort to different methods to ease problems of constipation a glass of warm water first thing in the morning, a cup of tea or coffee to initiate bowel movements and clean the system. Here are top 10 home remedies for constipation that promise results.

While water is a safe and healthy option, whether consuming tea and coffee in the morning is ideal to fight constipation is a bit questionable. These beverages are not just stimulants but are diuretics which can make symptoms of constipation worse. For someone who suffers from chronic constipation, drinking too much tea and coffee can, in fact, be damaging. We got Dr Jayshri Shah, consultant- hepatologist, gastroenterologist & therapeutic endoscopist at Jaslok Hospital & Research Centre, to know if drinking tea and coffee can help people deal with constipation. Here are five home remedies for constipation that might not work for you.

Many people need a stimulant to get started with bowel movements early in the morning. Drinking one or two cups of coffee in the morning is fine as these beverages act as a stimulant for bowel motility. However, it is not the morning cuppa that is effective in managing constipation, but how one tackles his lifestyle throughout the day that has an effect on one s condition, she says.

Even if your morning cuppa helps to ease constipation symptoms, drinking six to seven cups or even more throughout the day can have adverse effects. Since tea and coffee are diuretics, it leads to frequent urination throughout the day resulting in dehydration which makes passage of stools difficult, she explains.

What you can do:

Since lifestyle management and diet habits have an effect on your constipation, here are few things Dr Shah suggests you can do to ease constipation:

Regulate meal times and eat more fibre: A diet high in carbohydrates can alter bowel movements. Instead of eating food rich in fibre, having fruits and salads, can add bulk to the stool and ease constipation. Eating the right foods at the right time is the right way to deal with constipation. Here are five health risks of having too much fibre.

Drink enough water: We cannot stress this enough, but in a tropical climate like ours drinking two to three litres of water is essential to keep one hydrated and constipation at bay.

Image source: Shutterstock

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How To Make Yourself Poop

Let’s look on the bright side: Of all the digestive issues out there, constipation isn’t necessarily the worst thing your stomach could do to you. But that still doesn’t make it pleasurable, and you deserve real relief. So…how exactly do you make yourself poop?

Luckily, there are a few ways you can speed things up, if, say you’re heading out for a morning run or have a long car ride ahead of you. The best part: Most are totally natural things you likely do every day anyway—and they’re doctor-recommended methods for how to make yourself poop.

Try one of these 10 tricks the next time you’re feeling more backed up than usual, and are hunting for answers for how to relieve constipation fast.

1. Load up on foods with fiber.

          Fiber-rich foods with a high water content, such as raw carrots, apples with the skin or peel on, and avocados are all great sources of fiber to help get things moving, says Christine Lee, MD, a gastroenterologist at the Cleveland Clinic.

          “When consumed, these foods create an osmotic gradient,” says Dr. Lee—that means they force more water to be pulled into the colon during digestion, which then helps ease and prevent constipation by helping things flow a little more smoothly.

          2. Or, take a fiber supplement.

          You can get the same effects from a psyllium husk fiber supplement, says Dr. Lee. Look for a daily supplemental dose of 6 to 9 grams of fiber, which are available over the counter.

          Just remember: Eating a nutritious diet (which should naturally include some natural fiber found in food) is key, even if you decide to take a fiber supplement. You can’t just add a spoonful of Metamucil to a bottle of diet cola and expect your digestive system to work properly.

          3. Drink some coffee—preferably *hot.*

          This is often the first idea that comes to mind if faced with the dilemma of how to make yourself poop. Warm beverages in general, particularly a hot cup of coffee or tea, in the morning, can help to get things moving, says Dr. Lee.

          But coffee in particular is a must for anyone looking for how to poop immediately in the morning (especially runners, Dr. Lee notes, as it’s much more convenient to empty your stomach before you hit the pavement). The heat from the coffee can stimulate movement, but the coffee itself and its high levels of caffeine are also “known to stimulate colon motility,” says Dr. Lee.

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          Coffee can work warm or cold. But other cold caffeinated beverages, like iced tea or caffeinated sodas, won’t have the same effect.

          4. Get a little exercise in.

          Ever been in the middle of a run when you needed a bathroom—STAT? You’re not alone. That’s because “hiking, walking on uneven grounds, jogging, and biking can all increase your metabolism, which in turn increases intestinal motility,” says Dr. Lee.

          Also important: If you’ve been busier than usual and have gotten into an exercise dry spell (and you’re noticing some bathroom issues) it might be a clue as to why you’re not pooping as much as you’d like. Making sure to incorporate even short regular workouts into your routine could be the secret solution you need, she says.

          5. Try massaging your perineum—no, really.

          A technique in which you massage your perineum (the stretch of skin that separates the vagina from your anus), by pushing repeatedly on the skin with your index and pointer finger, can help to ease constipation because of the pressure points contained in that area, according to a 2015 study in the Journal of General Internal Medicine. (Similarly, massaging the same area can help promote down-there relaxation during childbirth to prevent tearing, per the study.)

          In the study, participants who massaged the area to promote bowel movements experienced improved bowel function, compared to the group that didn’t do the hands-on technique. Also: 82 percent of those who did use the technique said they’d continue to use it long after the study was over. While more research is needed, it’s definitely worth a try the next time you’re backed up and at your wit’s end trying to figure out how to make yourself poop.

          6. Try an over-the-counter laxative.

          Polyethylene glycol 3350 (you might recognize it as MiraLAX) is made up of compounds that are not digestible and not absorbable—which means they cause a diarrheal effect, says Dr. Lee.

          At lower doses, it can help prevent constipation, and at higher doses, it can induce diarrhea. So you can adjust the dose you take if you want to get things moving just slightly without them getting disastrous, she says.

          7. Or try a prescription laxative if things get really bad.

          Lee also recommends talking to your doctor about trying prescription laxatives if none of the other methods have worked. “Prescription drugs are effective, but they can be expensive, so they should generally be left as a last resort after you’ve tried these other methods,” she says.

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          Another downside of laxative medications: Your body can get used to them, so eventually you might not be able to go poop without them if you use them too often.

          8. Try squatting over the toilet when you think you might be ready to go.

          The squatting position can be mimicked by putting a stool under your feet to raise your knees up, says Peyton Berookim, MD, director of the Gastroenterology Institute of Southern California in Los Angeles.

          Squatting modifies the anatomy by relaxing the muscles in that area while also elevating the part of your colon that makes for easier emptying of the bowel. “The closer you are to a full squat, the easier it will be to poop,” he says.

          9. Give yourself a belly rub.

          No really—applying moderate pressure and massaging your abdomen in a clockwise direction can help you move your bowels, says Dr. Berookim. Colonic massage has been shown to improve constipation, he says.

          This can be performed by applying moderate pressure along the horseshoe shape of the colon in your right lower quadrant. Then continue moving up to the rib cage, across the stomach and underneath the ribs to your left lower quadrant, which is the point where stool is emptied.

          10. Make sure you’re properly hydrated.

          “One of the most common causes of constipation is dehydration,” Dr. Berookim says. “When the body is poorly hydrated, it will compensate by withdrawing water from the large intestine (colon) resulting in hard stools.”

          A good rule of thumb is to drink one ounce of water for every two pounds of your body weight, he says.

          Emilia Benton
          Emilia Benton is a Houston-based freelance writer and editor.

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          90,000 Tea or coffee – which is healthier for our body?

          • David Robson
          • BBC Future

          Photo Credit, Thinkstock

          There are countless arguments in the endless debate about the superiority of one drink over another. However, what is the scientific evidence?

          George Orwell could write about Britain: “Tea is one of the pillars of civilization in this country.”

          However, even we British are forced to admit that our national drink is facing stiff competition from the various espressos, cappuccino and lattes pouring into our shores.

          Despite the risk of getting involved in this eternal and bitter dispute, the columnist

          BBC Future decided to weigh the relative benefits of each of the drinks.

          Naturally, we don’t take taste into account. We had to comb through the scientific literature to find out what real, measurable effect these two drinks have on our bodies and minds.

          Wake-up call

          For most, injecting a dose of caffeine into the body is the first reason we prefer a particular drink.Caffeine is our engine oil that comes in when our bodies creak slightly early in the morning.

          Based solely on beverage composition, coffee should win easily: a cup of tea contains about half the stimulant caffeine (40 milligrams) found in a standard cup of brewed filtered coffee (80 to 115 milligrams).

          However, this is not necessarily reflected in the strength of the awakening shake provided by the beverage.

          During one – I must say, small – study, subjects were given tea or coffee, and it turned out that both drinks produced the same effect on the participants, adding vigor in the morning.

          Although the results of the experiments were based on subjective feelings of vigor, it was not possible to identify any obvious differences in the action of the two drinks and in more objective indicators, for example, in the speed of reaction.

          In fact, if you drink tea that is brewed to the same strength as coffee, it has been shown to be more effective in increasing brain concentration.

          Scientists have concluded that the caffeine dose in a drink is not everything: perhaps our expectations also determine how cheerful we feel, or it is the impression of the taste and smell of our favorite drink that awakens our senses.

          Subtotal: contrary to logic, tea seems to provide the same powerful boost of vivacity in the morning as coffee does. There is a draw in this nomination.

          Sleep quality

          The most striking difference between tea and coffee is the sweet moment when you rest your head on the pillow.

          Photo Credit, iStock

          Photo Caption,

          Researchers at the University of Surrey found that people who drink coffee tend to have a harder time falling asleep at night

          Comparing people who drink the same amount of tea and coffee on average, University researchers Surrey County in the United Kingdom has confirmed that both drinks are equally beneficial for focusing attention throughout the day.

          However, according to their observations, people who drink coffee find it more difficult to fall asleep at night – perhaps because the higher caffeine content eventually affects them.

          In contrast, tea drinkers experienced longer and more restful sleep.

          Subtotal: tea provides many of the benefits that coffee offers, but without sleepless nights – is a clear victory for tea .

          Teeth staining

          Just like red wine, coffee and tea are known for turning our pearly white teeth yellow and brown. But which drink makes it stronger?

          Photo Credit, Getty

          Photo Caption,

          Dentists say natural tea pigments are more likely to adhere to tooth enamel than coffee colorants

          Most dentists seem to agree that natural tea pigments are more likely sticks to tooth enamel than coffee pigments – especially if you use a mouthwash that contains the common antiseptic chlorhexidine, which appears to attract microscopic particles and bind them.

          Subtotal: If you want a snow-white smile, then coffee is perhaps the lesser of two evils.

          Balm for a troubled soul …

          It is customary in England to offer “tea and sympathy” to a distressed friend – the idea is that a cup of Earl Gray tea (black flavored tea with bergamot) serves to cure the troubled mind.

          And in fact, there is evidence that tea can calm your nerves: those who drink tea on a regular basis tend to show calmer psychological reactions to anxious situations (such as public speaking).

          Overall, people who drink three cups of tea a day are 37% less likely to develop depression than those who do not drink tea.

          Coffee does not have this reputation; some people report that coffee makes them feel like their nerves are shattered.

          However, there is reason to believe that coffee may also protect against mental health problems in the long term.

          Recent “meta-analysis” (summarizing observations of over 300,000participants) found that every cup of coffee drunk during the day reduced the risk of depression by about 8%.

          Photo author, iStock

          Photo caption,

          Tea is said to be soothing. At least in Britain, many are convinced of this

          Other drinks – for example, sugary soft drinks – on the contrary, only increase the risk of developing mental illness.

          However, we will have to add a fly in the ointment to these results: despite all the efforts spent by scientists in conducting this kind of research, it is difficult to exclude other factors that may be behind these patterns.

          The case seems to be that both drinks are a cocktail of nutrients that reduce stress responses and improve mood in the long run.

          Subtotal : Based on limited facts, this is draw .

          … And Body Balm

          Intriguing, albeit inconclusive, are the studies that suggest that both tea and coffee have many health benefits.

          For example, several cups of any of these drinks a day appears to reduce the risk of diabetes. (However, the question of how significant this benefit is is still controversial: the estimated figures vary from 5 to 40%).

          Since even decaffeinated coffee has the same benefits, it seems likely that other nutrients affect the body’s metabolism in such a way that it can continue to efficiently produce glucose in the blood without becoming insulin insensitive, which is the cause of diabetes.

          Both beverages do not appear to protect the heart very well.

          There is some evidence, however, that coffee is better for protecting the heart, while tea appears to be slightly better at protecting against cancer risk, possibly due to the antioxidants it contains.

          Subtotal: draw – surprisingly, both drinks turned out to be health elixirs.

          Final Verdict

          Most of us Brits would prefer tea to be the clear winner, but we still have to admit that there are not many differences between the properties of these drinks, if we do not take into account personal tastes.

          In terms of the total of the intermediate results, we got a draw. Still, based solely on the fact that tea allows you to fall asleep better at night, we tend to call this a winner.

          You might have a different opinion – why don’t you share it on social media?

          Photo author, Thinkstock

          What to do with constipation?

          Periodically disturbed by constipation. It is difficult to see a doctor, and it seems that constipation can go away if you eat certain foods.I read that you need to eat beets and prunes, but such a diet does not help me much. Friends advise laxatives, but I’ve heard somewhere that you can’t often use them.

          So what to do and is there a special diet that will get rid of this ailment?

          Constipation is one of the most common digestive complaints in Western countries and Russia. Constipation can be an independent condition, but in most cases it is a consequence of changes in lifestyle or a symptom of other diseases.

          There is no universal diet that would guarantee everyone, without exception, the absence of constipation for the rest of their lives. However, it makes sense to change something in the way of life if you want to encounter them as rarely as possible.

          See your doctor

          Our articles are written with a passion for evidence-based medicine. We refer to reputable sources and go for comments from reputable doctors. But remember: the responsibility for your health lies with you and your doctor. We do not write prescriptions, we make recommendations.It is up to you to rely on our point of view or not.

          What is constipation

          Not all symptoms may occur, but one symptom without other complaints does not have to be considered constipation.

          People empty their bowels in different ways, and only you can assess what is normal for you and what causes concern. The main factor is a change in the usual situation with a chair. Do not be guided by others: some people empty their bowels only three times a week and are completely healthy.But if for many years your norm is a daily toilet, then three bowel movements a week is a reason to look at the situation more closely.

          Only a doctor can determine why you have constipation. In most cases, this is due to changes in lifestyle or medication. For example, you may move less, eat fewer vegetables, take pain relievers, or take iron supplements.

          If stool disorders bother regularly for three months, then constipation is considered chronic.This is due to impaired motility of the colon or coordination of the muscles that are responsible for defecation. That is, the process of transmitting signals about the need to poop is disrupted or the feces move through the intestines too slowly, although there are no anatomical abnormalities.

          Sometimes constipation is a symptom of another disease: diabetes, hypothyroidism, colon or rectal cancer. Therefore, even if constipation goes away on its own or after a laxative, but tends to recur, it is better to discuss this with a doctor – gastroenterologist or therapist.

          It also makes sense to consult a doctor for constipation if a relative has already been diagnosed with cancer of the rectum or colon.

          There are also “red flags” – symptoms, in case of which you need to go to a specialist as soon as possible:

          1. Constipation is accompanied by a fever and you do not have a cold.
          2. You have vomiting, cramping pains in the abdomen, it is swollen, but you cannot fart.
          3. You saw blood in the stool.
          4. You are losing weight quickly.

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          We will tell you in the mailing list “This is the norm”. Twice a month we send letters on how to check the prescription, choose a quality medicine from a dozen analogues and return money for treatment

          What to do if you are afraid to go to the doctor

          If there is a problem, it must be resolved with a specialist: there is no safe workaround. To avoid embarrassment and discomfort, I advise you to look for a modern doctor with the proper level of qualifications.

          If you go to the polyclinic for compulsory medical insurance, you need to take the coupon to the therapist. He can independently prescribe treatment or give a referral to a gastroenterologist if your situation is ambiguous for him. If you go on a VHI policy or to a private clinic, you can immediately make an appointment with a gastroenterologist: this is a narrower specialist on the topic of constipation.

          Constipation is also dealt with by a proctologist, but he only treats diseases of the rectum. They can also cause constipation, but more often it occurs due to malfunctions in the upstream gastrointestinal tract.Therefore, when self-referring to a narrow specialist, it is more logical to start with a consultation with a gastroenterologist.

          Often, your doctor will ask about your symptoms and assess your general condition to confirm the diagnosis of constipation and determine its cause. Will pay attention to bloating, pain when feeling it, weakness, weight loss.

          Sometimes additional examinations are needed. For example, your doctor may need to feel your rectum with a gloved finger. He may order a fecal occult blood test to rule out certain diseases.

          In rare cases, your doctor may recommend a flexible examination to examine either the lower part or the entire colon. These procedures are called sigmoidoscopy and colonoscopy. Such methods are needed in cases where the patient’s health is at risk, and there are no typical explanations for the reasons for the deterioration of the condition.


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          How is constipation treated

          Modern Western and Russian recommendations include increasing physical activity, changing the diet and taking laxatives as conservative treatment.

          How to treat constipation – National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases, USA

          Constipation – Clinical Guidelines of the Russian Ministry of Health

          Physical activity. A sedentary lifestyle increases the risk of constipation, so scientists recommend moving at least 150 minutes a week. This is not only about sports exercises, but also about the usual actions: walk to the car, go for coffee, wash the floor or do yoga. Five walks a week for half an hour – and the norm is fulfilled.It doesn’t look so menacing.

          Diet change. Doctors recommend that people with constipation increase the amount of fluids and fiber in their diet. Fiber is a fiber of plant food, it retains water in the intestine and makes its contents soft and voluminous. It is easier for such a mass to come out. And if there is little fiber in the diet, then water from the intestines is more easily absorbed, and the feces become more solid and dry – its movement slows down.

          What to eat and drink for constipation – National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases USA

          Vegetables, fruits, wallpaper bread, peeled and second grade flour, unpolished cereals and legumes are excellent sources of fiber.The norm for fiber for an adult is 25-31 grams per day.

          How much fiber is in different foods

          Product Approximate Fiber Content
          Cooked beans, 4 tbsp. spoons 6 g
          Large potato with skin 5 g
          Prunes, 10 pcs. 5 g
          Apple 4 g
          Medium Kiwi 2.4 g
          Banana 2.4 g
          Small orange 2.4 g
          Tomato 2 g
          Piece of rye bread 2 g
          Pasta portion 1 g

          Beans, ready-made, 4 tbsp.spoons

          6 g

          Large potato with skin

          5 g

          Prunes, 10 pcs.

          5 g

          Medium Kiwi

          2.4 g

          Small orange

          2.4 g

          Piece of rye bread

          2 g

          Portion of pasta

          1 g

          In order for the fiber to have something to retain, the liquid must enter the body from the outside. It doesn’t have to be pure water – other drinks and soups count as well.

          There is no special food that can eliminate constipation. However, in order not to aggravate the situation, it is better to reduce the proportion of foods in the diet that are low in fiber:

          1. Chips, snacks, hot dogs.
          2. Fast food products: instant noodles, instant cereals and other dishes that you just need to pour hot water into to cook.
          3. Meat.
          4. Frozen ready meals: dumplings, pasties, donuts, pizza, etc.p.

          Laxatives can help relieve recurrent constipation, but if you don’t change your lifestyle, constipation can recur over and over again.

          In the Russian clinical guidelines for the treatment of constipation, drugs with such active ingredients as macrogol (polyethylene glycol), lactulose and lactitol are in the first place. They help to soften intestinal contents and increase its volume. Sold in pharmacies under various names without a prescription, many cost around 300 R.

          If these drugs do not solve the problem of constipation, the doctor may prescribe stimulant laxatives with bisacodyl, sodium picosulfate or anthraquinones in the composition. They enhance intestinal motility by stimulating the nerve endings of its mucous membrane. However, they have serious side effects. For example, they can cause not normal bowel movements, but diarrhea with cramping abdominal pain and flatulence, can disrupt the balance of electrolytes in the body, and also cause an addictive effect.Therefore, assigning them to yourself is a dangerous occupation.

          Dietary supplements with a laxative effect are not drugs. They are not tested for effectiveness and compliance with the composition in the same way as drugs, so instead of a mild laxative effect, you can get unpleasant symptoms and provoke health-threatening conditions. I would not recommend experimenting on yourself, because standard treatment is a fairly simple procedure and little money.

          What to do? 07/02/20

          The doctor prescribed dietary supplements along with the usual medicine.This is fine?

          If the cause of constipation is problems with the coordination of the pelvic floor and rectal muscles, then muscle retraining exercises will help. Such treatment is carried out only in centers that specialize in this area, and on the referral of a doctor.

          Usually conservative treatment solves the problem of constipation, if it is not a consequence of another disease. Otherwise, the underlying disease will have to be treated.

          90,000 15 ways to help yourself with constipation without medication

          Today I would like to talk to you on a rather intimate topic – constipation.It is not customary to discuss this problem in a wide circle, but almost everyone faces it, and many – on a regular basis (with chronic constipation). Not only does constipation itself cause discomfort in the abdomen, heaviness, bloating and sometimes increased gas formation and decreased appetite, but it also disrupts the usual way of life and makes a person worry about this.

          How regularly we go to the toilet affects not only the health of the intestines and our emotional background, but also the health of the blood – if toxins are not removed from the body in a timely manner, they enter the bloodstream and are then carried throughout the body.Therefore, the quality of blood affects almost everything: the health of joints, skin, hair, immunity, and so on.

          If constipation occurs frequently, and nothing is done about it, then they can go into a chronic stage. In modern Western medicine chronic constipation is diagnosed if bowel movements occur less often than once every three days, while in a quarter of cases you have to make a lot of effort, and the feeling of complete emptying does not remain, and the stool itself is dry, hard, small solid fractions …Ideally, emptying should be done once or twice every day. To understand how we can help ourselves if we rarely have this, let’s first look at what are the main causes of constipation.

          Causes of constipation

          There are many reasons for constipation. Most often, this topic worries women due to a certain physiological structure and hormonal background (for example, constipation often occurs before menstruation, during pregnancy, after childbirth, and is often aggravated with age), as well as people with an unbalanced diet and everyone who travels a lot or nervous.

          Often, on or after day of travel constipation occurs. This can be attributed to the loss of fluid: airports and aircraft tend to have very dry conditioned air; in addition, we try to drink less so that we do not have to run unscheduled around the airport and look for a toilet, and on the plane we do not always have the opportunity to retire.

          Another possible reason is that our usual schedule gets confused : a very early rise or a night flight, a long road, sitting motionless for many hours in a plane or car seat, tiring queues, lack of breakfast and, in general, our usual food, Eating sandwiches and dry snacks instead of a full meal, coupled with dehydration, does not contribute to good digestion in any way.

          Often we ourselves block the signals of our body about the need to visit the toilet, because, in our opinion, now is not the time. Our gut knows our schedule like no one else and at normal times works like a clock, adjusting to our lifestyle. But on trips, everything is different: unusual activity at an unusual time or, conversely, its absence, change of time zones – all this affects the work of the intestines, which is very sensitive to such changes.

          Stress can also cause constipation (or vice versa, diarrhea – whoever is “lucky”, everyone has a different response).When we are nervous, our sympathetic nervous system is activated, which is responsible for reactions like “fight / flight”, and digestion and everything related to it fade into the background as less vital functions. Blood flows from the intestines to the periphery (head, arms and legs), so that in case of danger we can think well, give back or gurgle. Although in modern life our stress is often not associated with immediate danger, the reactions of our body have remained similar to those of ancient people. At such times, some of us also experience constipation, which can last up to several days.

          Boiled beets are a good source of soft fiber // Thanks for the photo by Natalia Fogarty from Unsplash.com

          Another cause of gas and constipation can be the large amount of fermentable carbohydrates in food. These are the carbohydrates that are fermented by intestinal bacteria. If the body is healthy, then, as a rule, there is nothing wrong with it (and this is even good, since our bacteria get food in this way). However, this can become a problem if an unfriendly flora is involved in the process, which provokes colic, severe bloating, unpleasant gas and impairs the absorption of nutrients by the intestinal walls.

          Quite often, such hyperfermentation is caused by fructose (fruit, honey), yeast (for example, butter white bread), products containing inulin (a type of soluble fiber consisting of fructose residues found in Jerusalem artichoke, onion, garlic, also used as an additive in finished products) or fermentation products (for example, wine), as well as cabbage and legumes. Many people have reactions to at least some of these foods.

          In addition, many medicines have side effects such as constipation.This is worth remembering if you have a tendency to constipation, and it is worth taking measures to prevent it if you have been prescribed medications with similar effects. Poorly functioning kidneys that drain water too quickly can also trigger constipation, as can some types of allergies. Also, the causes of constipation can be tumors in the intestines or the postoperative period, but in this case we cannot do without medical help and we do not consider such reasons in this article.

          Thus, we see that the main causes of constipation are associated with malnutrition (eating unsuitable or new products for us or in an unsuitable combination for us, drinking little liquid (less than 2.5 liters per day) or with violation of the psycho-emotional background or lifestyle (we are stressed, limited mobility due to a trip or due to illness, we eat at the wrong time, etc.)etc.). Based on this, you can help yourself by eliminating these reasons or reducing their impact. To do this, you need to add foods or rituals with the opposite effect to your diet or daily routine.

          How to Help: Nutrition

          If you understand that in your case, malnutrition is most likely to blame (and this is the most common cause of ), then you can take the following steps to improve the situation:

          1. Eliminate for a while foods causing bloating .This, as a rule, cabbage of all kinds, fructose (fresh fruit, honey, other sweet), legumes (beans, peas, lentils, chickpeas, etc.), foods with yeast, other foods to which you have noticed a reaction swelling. The same goes for insoluble fiber – especially in the evening when digestion becomes weaker. You can return it when the problem is resolved.
          2. Avoid cold foods : drinks straight from the refrigerator or with ice, ice cream, etc. We need to improve blood flow around the intestines, and the cold narrows the blood vessels.
          3. For the time being, skip raw salads, especially in the afternoon. They are harder to digest than cooked vegetables, and we need to make digestion easier.
          4. Eliminate (at least temporarily) caffeine and alcohol : they irritate the gastrointestinal tract and damage its mucous membrane, and we don’t need it at all now. In addition, there are studies that prove that caffeine provokes increased peristalsis in the intestines, first making it easier for us to go to the toilet (which is why many people like to drink coffee in the morning ), and over time, causing addiction to the nerve cells of the intestine and provoking the opposite reaction – constipation …
          5. Reduce your intake of salt and salty foods , as salt tends to dehydrate and during constipation the intestines are already very water-deficient. The same applies to dry foods such as nuts, seeds, crackers, crispbread, croutons, chips (even healthy ones), and some dried fruits. They dehydrate the intestines even more. Exception: prunes are a well-known remedy for constipation, which, on the contrary, attracts water molecules. In any case, it is better to pre-soak all dried fruits and nuts and some seeds so that they do not dry us out from the inside.
          6. Drink enough liquid (if you usually don’t drink enough), because if we don’t drink enough, the intestines try to draw in all the water from the food lump, making it even drier and making it harder to move to the exit. It is optimal to drink 2.5 liters a day: it is better if it is still unsweetened warm water, herbal tea, unsweetened vegetable juices, soups. Tea with ginger normalizes the work of the digestive tract very well (if there is no severe inflammation in the digestive tract).
          7. Temporarily switch to gentle diet: no hard-to-digest foods (especially in the afternoon), with one type of protein per meal, more warm soups, vegetable stews, broths, smoothies.
          8. To aid your digestion, you can drink glass of warm water with lemon juice about half an hour before meals. This drink works great in the morning, starting up the digestive tract and helping further bowel movements. I especially recommend it to those who have started their morning with a cup of coffee before, so that they can go to the toilet normally afterwards.

          Lemon and ginger will help improve the digestive tract // Thanks for the photo Dominik Martin from Unsplash.com

          At first, the effect will be weaker than that of coffee, but after one or two weeks the body will rebuild and the process will go much easier, and most importantly, there will be no unnecessary irritation of the intestinal walls, as is the case with caffeine.The amount of lemon juice (or lime – which one likes more) can be varied to your taste: start with a few drops, then look at your reaction – this will be enough for someone, but someone will want to add more, up to half a lemon per glass water. Lemon and lime can be substituted with quality apple cider vinegar (just a few drops per 200 ml). People with gastritis with high acidity or stomach ulcers should be more careful with this drink.

          9. Probiotics may also be helpful if your gut is dominated by an unfriendly microflora.And do not forget about prebiotics – a useful food for our bacteria (more about prebiotics and probiotics – here ). Choose foods with soluble fiber that have been mildly cooked or thoroughly ground (like in a smoothie). We temporarily excluded cabbage, but you can try to eat one or two tablespoons of sauerkraut – it is already partially fermented and is easier to digest than other types, moreover, it contains the lactobacilli we need.

          10.Some spices help fight bloating: fennel, coriander, cumin (cumin), ginger mentioned above. You can brew them as tea, pitch the seeds in a mortar or coffee grinder beforehand, and peel and grind the ginger (in a proportion of ½ teaspoon of different seeds + 1 cm of ginger root per glass of water), let it brew for 15-30 minutes and drink during breakfast or lunch.

          How to help: habits, rituals, lifestyle

          Sometimes dietary changes alone are not enough. This may be the case if constipation is caused by stress, improper habits, intense physical exertion or forced restriction of movement.What can we do in this case:

          1. If the reason is stress, then you need to try to relieve this stress. This requires the use of the parasympathetic nervous system . Any relaxation technique you usually find yourself saving will do. For example, self-massage of the abdominal area to improve motility with sesame or coconut oil, to which you can add a few drops of peppermint oil, sweet orange, cinnamon, rose and other oils that have a relaxing effect.

          Many yoga asanas help with constipation. stomach. Walking outdoors before bed can also help relieve unpleasant thoughts and anxiety. A few minutes of meditation or deep abdominal breathing also work well on the parasympathetic.

          2. Increasing physical activity will help if you previously had a period of restricted movement (for example, you were sick and had to lie in bed for several days, or traveled by plane or car, having spent many hours sitting in a chair).You can go jogging, yoga or Pilates.

          If you practice yoga, then there are a lot of asanas to improve peristalsis and to combat constipation. Asanas with a twist of the body will help (for example, Parivrita Parshvakonasana – an inverted pose of a stretched side; Jathara Parivartanasana), bending and stretching (for example, Dog facing downwards – Adho Mukha Shvanasana, Ardha Chandrasana – crescent pose, Janu Shirshasana type I twisting , Marichiasana), asanas with pressing the knees to the stomach (such as the child’s pose), the garland pose (Malasana), backbends, for example, the locust pose (Shalabhasana), Dhanurasana, Ushtrasana, etc.d.

          3. It is very important to give the previous meal to digest – this means, eat when you are really hungry, and not “when it’s time” or for a company, do not bite, try to withstand a break in food for at least 3 hours. Also, you need to chew food thoroughly , because poorly chewed food, even the most useful one, will fall into the stomach in a heavy lump and then it will take a long time to digest it, and there is a high probability that it will go further into the small and large intestines with such an unbroken lump.It is best to eat without distraction, without talking at the moment when you are chewing something, in a calm place, focusing on the taste, color, smell of food, and not on thoughts about work or business.

          4. Some people have a problem called by Julia Enders in her book “Charming Gut” as “ is not my toilet ” syndrome. People suffering from this syndrome simply cannot relax in someone else’s toilet (whether at a party, in the office, in a cafe or on a trip) and endure as much as they can, resorting to someone else’s toilet only as a last resort, but even then they may fail.You will have to work with yourself in this regard, “allowing” yourself to go to the toilet when you need it. Otherwise, over time, this can lead to a decrease in the reflex of the rectum to stretch and the mismatch of muscles and nerves in our intestines and brain, and as a result, there is no trace of their well-coordinated work, and we may experience chronic constipation, which is much more difficult to deal with.

          It is especially important to teach your children not to be shy and ask to use the toilet in kindergarten or school. If you nevertheless decide to visit someone else’s toilet, but “it doesn’t work,” you can try to create more physiological conditions for emptying your bowels by tucking your knees slightly to your chest (for example, squatting down for a while, or putting a small bench under your feet) or , as Julia Anders recommends: try sitting on the toilet, tilt your body to your feet, then straighten back and tilt again, and so on several times – this exercise often helps.

          5. If digestive problems such as constipation plague you on a regular basis, it makes sense to at least keep a food diary (write down everything you eat, how it was prepared, your feelings before and after meals for several days ) and analyze it independently or with a specialist (nutritionist, nutritionist). Also, with a specialist, you can go through personal programs at health restoration (and gastrointestinal health, in particular), after which you will learn how to maintain your health in the optimal way for you!

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          Dried figs: benefits and harms to the body. Articles of the company “COFFEE TERRITORY

          Figs are a wonderful and useful product. Many have tried it fresh or dried, but hardly thought about how useful it is.

          Fig, aka fig or fig, grows on trees of the genus ficus from the mulberry family. Latin name: Ficus carica.

          The fig tree is deciduous and can reach a height of 7‒10 meters. Trees grow in dry, sunny areas with fresh and deep soils. They also settle in rocky areas and can survive in less fertile soils. Fig trees live up to 100 years and have long, winding branches that sometimes exceed the height of the tree itself. The homeland of figs is the Middle East and Western Asia.Fig trees are now cultivated all over the world, including Asia and North America.

          Figs grow to a size of 3-5 centimeters, with an impressive weight of up to 50-70 grams. As they mature, green figs turn either purple or brown. Figs have a unique taste. The sweet soft texture and crunchy seeds create an unusual and interesting combination. The taste of the fruit also depends on its color. In nature, there are a large number of varieties of figs: oval or pear-shaped, white, green, red, yellow, purple and even black.Fresh figs are available from June to September, and dried figs are available all year round.

          Let’s take a step back in time and find out a little more about the origins of this amazing tree.

          The word “fig” comes from the Latin ficus and the Hebrew feg. Fig trees are known to be the first to be grown and cultivated. They are mentioned in the Bible as a symbol of peace and prosperity, and Adam and Eve used fig leaves as clothing. The Assyrians used figs as a sweetener as early as 3000 BC.BC NS. In ancient Greece, it was eaten by the participants of the Olympics, and it was presented to the winners as a reward. Aristotle in his works described the cultivation of figs in Greece. Thanks to the Greeks and Romans, fig trees spread throughout the Mediterranean region. Later, at the beginning of the 16th century, figs were brought to America and by the middle of the century – to China. Large fig gardens were planted in California by Spanish missionaries in the late 19th century.

          Figs are a wonderful and useful product.Many have tried it fresh or dried, but hardly thought about how useful it is.

          Which figs are healthier – dried or fresh

          Without a doubt, fresh fruits are good for health, but how good are dried fruits? If we talk about figs, then the difference is minimal. Unlike many dried fruits, dried figs have fewer calories than fresh ones! About 20 kcal – in one dried fig, and in fresh – already 30 kcal. However, fresh figs contain more water and because they take up more volume in the stomach, they satisfy hunger better.One dried fig contains 5 g of carbohydrates and 4 g of sugar, and fresh – 8 g and 7 g, respectively. The fiber content does not change after drying and is 1 g.

          Health benefits and harms of dried figs

          Figs are a storehouse of beneficial phytonutrients, antioxidants and vitamins. Dried figs are a source of natural sugars and soluble fiber. They are rich in fiber, potassium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, calcium, chlorine, sodium, vitamin B6 and K, retinol (vitamin A), thiamine (vitamin B1), riboflavin (vitamin B2).The use of figs is recommended for asthma, coughs, bronchitis, sexual dysfunctions, constipation, gastrointestinal disorders.

          Dried figs have a high glycemic index – 62, and fresh – 55. Therefore, the consumption of dried figs quickly increases blood sugar levels. On the other hand, the presence of potassium helps to reduce spikes in sugar. Therefore, people with type 2 diabetes need to be very careful when consuming figs.

          It should be noted that not only dried, but also fresh figs contain a large amount of natural sugar – fructose, which, if consumed excessively, may impair health.Therefore, dried figs are great as a natural and healthy treat for children and adults, but they are recommended to be consumed in moderation.

          Products with a sweet taste, including figs, quickly fill the body with energy. Therefore, it is better to include them in the diet in the morning so that this energy is used up during the day.

          Dried figs have many other beneficial properties. Let’s take a look at some of them.

          Excellent source of iron and tryptophan

          Hemoglobin is the most important protein in the human body.And to maintain it at a physiological level, iron is extremely necessary. Due to the large amount of iron in dried figs, the level of hemoglobin in the blood can be significantly increased. This is especially true for the growing body of children and adolescents, as well as during pregnancy in women. One dried fig provides approximately 2% of an adult’s daily iron requirement.

          Figs contain tryptophan, an amino acid involved in the synthesis of melatonin and vitamin B3, which are important for proper sleep and improving sleep quality.

          Strengthening the immune system

          Due to the high content of potassium, magnesium, antioxidants, figs stimulate and strengthen the immune system, kill bacteria, viruses and roundworms.

          Weight Control

          Fiber in figs helps in weight loss. However, its high calorie content can have the opposite effect, especially when consumed with milk. A few pieces a day is enough. Be careful and eat in moderation!

          The benefits of dried figs for men

          For centuries, figs have been used as a remedy for infertility and erectile dysfunction.Dried figs are good for the male body as they are rich in calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium and zinc. These trace elements increase the amount of energy, endurance and have a beneficial effect on potency. Magnesium has a positive effect on the production of male sex hormones.

          Recipe for men: Soak 2-3 pieces in milk, leave overnight and eat in the morning.

          Decrease in blood pressure

          Sodium, which is necessary for the vital functions of the organism, as a rule, is obtained from salt.But common salt is low in potassium and high in sodium. This can lead to vascular problems, high blood pressure and, as a result, hypertension. One dried fig fruit contains 2 mg sodium and 129 mg potassium. Therefore, it is ideal for protecting the body from hypertension and has a calming effect on the nervous system. Also, in the presence of a large amount of salt in the diet, potassium prevents the increased loss of calcium in the urine.

          Excellent source of calcium

          Calcium is one of the most important elements for the human body.It is essential for the formation and strengthening of bones, reduces the risk of osteoporosis, plays a major role in nerve function and is responsible for muscle contraction. Many plant foods contain calcium, but dried figs are an outstanding source of this micronutrient! Just five dried figs contain approximately 135 mg of calcium, which is about 12% of the daily requirement of an adult. For comparison, 100 ml of milk contains 125 mg of calcium.

          Also in the composition of figs there is a large amount of phosphorus, which stimulates the formation of bones and is involved in their restoration in case of degradation or damage.

          The benefits of dried figs for women

          Excess estrogen in the body can lead to problems during menopause: cancer of the ovaries, breast, uterus, weight gain, mood swings. The fig tree fruit helps to normalize estrogen, thereby reducing the risk of various diseases and adverse effects.

          Cancer prevention

          Figs are an excellent source of biologically active compounds such as fatty acids and phenols.These substances help reduce the risk of skin cancer. According to research, figs are rich in proteolytic enzymes that inhibit the growth of cancer cells in the stomach.

          A large amount of fiber in figs also has a positive effect not only on the general condition of the body, but also prevents the occurrence of breast, abdominal and rectal cancers. In addition to figs, the benefits of dried plums, dates, apples and pears can also be noted.

          Prevention of cardiovascular diseases, lowering cholesterol levels and a positive effect on the gastrointestinal tract

          Dried figs are rich in phytosterols, phenols, fatty acids and vitamin B6.These beneficial substances reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. Vitamin B6 is responsible for the production of serotonin, the happiness hormone that improves mood and lowers cholesterol.

          Soluble fiber (pectin), which is rich in figs, stimulate intestinal motility. When moving through the gastrointestinal tract, these fibers work like a magnet and collect excess cholesterol, and then leave the body through the excretory system. This “cleaning” has a positive effect on the digestive system, reduces the likelihood of constipation, hemorrhoids, and normalizes the digestive tract.Figs contain a large amount of seeds rich in mucin, which helps to remove toxins, mucus and cleanse the colon.

          Recipe for constipation: Soak figs in water for about 12 hours, then consume in the morning and evening.

          Reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s disease

          Figs are considered one of the best foods for neuroinflammation. Research from Australian and American universities has shown that figs can reduce the amount of inflammatory cytokines, special proteins of the immune system.Eating figs is beneficial in reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

          Skin benefits of dried figs

          Due to its high content of trace elements, figs help prevent and reduce many skin problems and diseases such as acne, acne and even cysts. And the presence of a powerful antioxidant – vitamin C – improves skin color, reduces the number and depth of wrinkles.

          Recipe: Grind 5 fresh or dried figs with a blender until a smooth paste is obtained.Add 1 teaspoon of oatmeal (or finely ground flakes), 1 teaspoon of milk, and half a teaspoon of ginger powder. Mix well until smooth. This mask can be used twice a week to leave your skin soft and smooth.

          Figs are useful for reducing skin pigmentation, including freckles. And also as a moisturizing, nourishing and rejuvenating agent for the skin.

          Recipe for a nourishing face mask: Cut 1-2 small figs in half, remove the pulp and grind in a puree.Add a teaspoon of honey or yogurt, stir. Apply the finished mask to the face and leave for 5 minutes, then rinse with water.

          Uses and benefits of dried figs for hair

          The condition of the hair and scalp depends on nutrition. If there is a lack of minerals, vitamins and trace elements in the diet, then this will certainly affect not only the appearance, but also the growth of hair and the condition of the skin. There are many different cosmetic products available, but they often do not give the desired results.Moreover, many of them are of artificial origin. In order to change the situation, first of all, you need to revise your diet, and secondly, include dried figs in your diet as a source of minerals and nutrients that will significantly improve the health of your hair.